Monday, July 23, 2007

Tony and Emma

Emma is originally from Detroit, Michigan, USA. At just a few weeks of age, she moved to Melbourne, Australia. Many years later, in 1968, Tony met Emma. He was 18 at the time and Emma was 40. I guess some would call that a spring/winter, um, ''situation''? Although it may not be accurate to refer to their connection as a situation since they have now been together for nearly 40 years. Tony must be particularly fond of Americans; first Emma, then me…but I digress.

Tony did not tell me about Emma right away. It took awhile for me to learn about her significance in Tony’s life. I remember a few friends wondering how I might respond, and if I would be gracious, about her presence. A presence that surely was going to stay in Tony’s life.

I met Emma in 1992.
She is a beauty.
And she hasn’t changed much!
Here she is:

1928 Chrysler Model 72

Emma was not always known as Emma. In fact, she used to be known as Walter. Tony did not think the name Walter was suitable. Upon acquisition he named her Emma, after Emma Peel from The Avengers, and the has name stuck. Very few people remember, or know, that Emma was previously known as Walter, as in Walter Chrysler.

Tony is the second owner of Emma. In 1968, Emma was actually a small fortune for an 18 year old: one thousand dollars! She was then, as she is now, A Classic. Tony has driven her as a daily car, dressed her in shiny white ribbons for weddings and has chauffeured innumerable friends and family for leisurely cruises in Australia, England, America and now France. Any one care to guess how many miles she has done? Our best guess is LOTS. The odometer has not functioned for 30 years. Is this how a car ignores age?

Emma is still fundamentally Original. She has never been fully restored although she has had ongoing refurbishment. Tony has a photo of Emma painted blue which may have been the original color. Emma has been yellow since the 1950’s. If you want to know about gearboxes, hydraulic brakes, and those other what-cha-ma-call-its under the bonnet, I must refer you to Tony. The sorts of things I can oooh and aahhh about are the wooden spokes, soft-top, and leather interior.

Perhaps surprisingly, Emma is not worth a lot of money. But, on the other hand, how do you put a price tag on something that has been an immeasurable pleasure for such a long time? For Emma, I wear a hat, even if I look silly in it. For Emma, I will disappear into the background when others stop us for photos.

So there you have it. Tony and Emma. Both fundamentally original with unknown mileage and much more drive ahead. Me? I’m along for the ride. A front seat passenger with a wide brim hat and a silly parade wave…enjoying every minute of every journey with Tony and Emma.

Happy Trails!
posted by Pam @ 8:20 AM |


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